From 2007 to ~2016, a coalition known as Progressive Brethren celebrated, strategized, supported one another, and engaged in critical conversations about theology, social justice, biblical studies, and the future of the church. While Progressive Brethren has no formal role or task at this time, we continue to be a loose community affiliated with the Church of the Brethren. Wherever you are on this journey, we welcome you to join us and share in the goodness of a supportive and justice-seeking community.
Community-building is a first fruit. Progressive Brethren was birthed from Womaen’s Caucus, Brethren Mennonite Council for LGBTQ Interests and Voices for an Open Spirit (which eventually became Open Table Cooperative). Together, these organizations hosted progressives from all over the Church of the Brethren at worshipful, healing gatherings seeking the Spirit’s movement. The themes of the gatherings were
Faithful and Just (2008)
Ready at the Thresholds (2009)
Forward Together: Conversations Toward an Enlivened Community (2010)
Pressing On, No Turning Back (2011)
Holy Work: Becoming a Beloved Community (2012)
Holy Longing: This is My Body (2013)
Spiritual but Not Religious (2014)
We know this vital and faithful work continues, as we nurture local community, equip at Annual Conference, and engage Jesus’ radical work in the world.
Progressive Brethren’s community building and strategizing roles have naturally shifted to the vigorous Supportive Communities Network (lovingly and wisely built through BMC). Open Table continues to dialog and call for open discussion for the wider church. Womaen’s Caucus continues to advocate for and uplift the voices of women in the church. The Spirit is moving in comforting and uncomfortable ways within the church! As we wait, groaning in labor pains with our God and our neighbors, this domain space is available for new life, coming.